CNN Compares Girl Scout Cookies Made by Little Brownie Bakers and ABC Bakers

by Leezel Tanglao

When is a Samoa not a Samoa?

It turns out that not all Girl Scout cookies are created equal.

That's because there are two officially licensed bakeries in the U.S., and each has its own slightly different take on the iconic favorites.

For one thing, the cookie names are different.

Troops that use Little Brownie Bakers, based in Louisville, Kentucky, sell cookies called Samoas, Tagalongs, Do-si-dos, Trefoils and Savannah Smiles.

But troops that use Richmond, Virginia based ABC Bakers sell Caramel deLites, Peanut Butter Patties, Peanut Butter Sandwiches, Shortbreads and Lemonades.

Both bakeries make Thin Mints and the scouts' newest flavor, S'mores. The two versions of the Thin Mint look and taste slightly different, while the two versions of the S'mores are entirely different cookies.

The Thin Mints from ABC Bakers are crunchier and taste mintier, while the ones from Little Brownie have a smoother chocolate coating.

Likewise, Samoas and its ABC Bakery counterpart, Caramel deLites, have similar shapes. But Samoas have a stronger, sweet coconut taste.

Even their calorie counts differ. Samoas have 10 more calories per serving, but Caramel deLites have slightly more sugar.

Then there are the cookies that look completely different -- right to down to packaging.

The Little Brownie version of S'mores looks like a graham cracker sandwich, while the ABC Bakers version looks like a chocolate covered square.

The one thing that's consistent across the board: the cookies' popularity.

Regardless of where they come from, Thin Mints are the top seller, followed by Samoas/Caramel deLites and then Tagalongs/Peanut Butter Patties, according to the Girl Scouts.

This year marks the 100th year of the first known Girl Scout cookie sale. That was in 1917, when scouts in Muskogee, Oklahoma decided to sell the homemade cookies they baked as a way to help fund projects.

Since then, the cookie program has become largest entrepreneurial venture geared toward girls around the world.

Close to a million girls participate in the cookie program every season, selling about 200 million boxes of cookies and grossing roughly $800 million.

The profits go to the local councils and troops to fund all kinds of programs for the girls, from business to leadership.

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